Three signs to identify a stroke
Published on August 23, 2015
Every year around 17 million people die of cardiovascular diseases worldwide, the top two diseases being heart attacks and strokes. As one of the leading causes of deaths and disabilities, it is important to know about a stroke and be prepared to act fast if it happens. Death and even disability can be prevented in most cases if the patient receives quick medical help. Knowing the symptoms and rushing the person to the hospital can save a life.
A stroke is when blood flow to the brain stops or is interrupted causing brain cells to die due to the lack of oxygen and nutrients supplied by the blood. There are two types of life-threatening strokes. Majority of strokes are ischemic, meaning that a blood clot blocks the blood flow of an artery that supplies the brain. The second type of stroke is hemorrhagic, when a blood vessel breaks and bleeds into the brain. Interruption of blood flow to the brain can cause severe temporary and permanent damage to health. Aftermath of a stroke can be paralysis, trouble with eyesight, speech and emotions. If a person is treated within 60 minutes of a stroke they can be saved, but every single minute counts because the longer you take for medical help, the more damage is caused to the brain.
Here’s a simple one minute test that will identify a stroke patient
- Ask the person to show you their teeth. If the person can’t smile, their face droops or one side of their face is weak or paralyzed – it’s a symptom of a stroke.
- Ask them to raise both arms; stroke patients won’t be able to raise both arms.
- Slurred speech is another sign of stroke; ask the person to repeat a simple sentence like “the grass is green” if they can’t – you have a stroke patient.
If you spot any of these signs, immediately call the emergency number and report a stroke!
Just remember: A drooping face, inability to raise both arms and slurred speech – three main signs of a stroke. Other symptoms include dizziness, confusion and trouble understanding people, eye-sight problems, difficulty in keeping balance and severe headache.
Act fast because every minute counts. One minute of your time can save a person’s life.